On Information Architecture...

Earlier in my career, when I first made the switch from web developer to producer, I found myself needing to see the database schema before I could make any further decisions. Overtime I discovered my role as a producer and I learned and began to respect a process for getting through a web site project. Before long, I stopped envisioning normalized data structures and SQL queries.

But, I have recently started thinking about the information in a very stark way again. It's the wire framing process during the architectural phase...And how clients look at the information and immediately start taking positions on where something is or how much relative weight it has on the page. I find myself day dreaming about some other way to get through this part of the process and I land on something more like a diagram of the actual data objects than a wire frame interface.

Perhaps this is a logical interim step? I am not one to go adding unnecessary work but I have seen so many review meetings derailed because it is difficult for the client to separate defining what the elements on the page will be vs. how the pages will look and/or function.



Dear God:

I believe we have had enough rainy days for the summer. I know it is important but I am thinking at this point everyone has enough to drink until October, right?




Moved...THANK YOU...

...Jackie, Max, Josh, Sean, Eric, Stevie, Ian, Colin...could not have done it without you guys.

I am happily settled in with Jackie at the new place. I was just getting used to calling myself a 'Cantabrigian' too. I am now a resident of Jamaica Plain, which is a 4.4 square mile neighborhood of Boston. So, I am officially a Bostonian...a title I have long claimed but never truly earned until now. All those years I traveled across the country it was just much easier to say I was a Bostonian than a 'Winthropian'...The actual; town I grew up in which borders Boston to the Northeast

In either case, I am very excited about my new home with Jackie. We had so much help from friends and brother Max...we were able to clean, scrape, sand and paint an entire two bedroom apartment and move me in three days. And, this was no simple white-washing...the bedrooms, living room and kitchen all have unique color schemes.

The cats, after an evening of sulking around with their little tails held low, seem to be settling in. They are nervous but they also love the boxes and stuff. I think, what with the spare bedroom and all, I will buy them one of those cat towers for a house warming gift...



I am moving to Jamaica Plain this weekend...too much to do to Blog very much...



I'm in the process of experimenting with Mozilla Ubiquity for Firefox. This is a really cool way to extend the experience of interacting with the WWW. I'd try to explain what it does but honestly, I am not that smart. In a nutshell, you can give your browser plain English commands to access various components of different online tools at the same time.

For instance, lets say I want to twitter about this blog post as I am writing it...I simply select some text and hit control + space then type 'twitter this selection'. Wild.

The real interest to me is this: What does the eventual, wide spread adoption of this technology mean for the web interface? Assuming voice recog or mind recog become viable tools, software like this represents a very powerful way to speed up typical use case scenarios.

Something interesting I noticed is this: As developer I am well aware of the unseen pipes and connections between applications humming across the WWW that go largely unused between different services. This creates little walls around each application...I have to go to this site to get something and then go to that site to use it. No surprises. However, as a user the idea of knocking these barriers down in such a usable way still seems completely novel.


Bing this!

I tried the new Bing search engine today. My reaction is: unimpressed, annoyed. The site offers no real differentiators except apparently Microsoft is making unexplained decisions on your behalf about what results you want. Am I supposed to be happy about this? Because the second search I tested did not return the expected results.

Oh, and the image results page crashed my browser out completely, forcing a restart. That's just amateur.

Microsoft, I know Google pisses you off, what with the free calendar, word processor and spreadsheet...But this is one area you might not be smart enough to wander into. If you want to fight back you should probably stick with what you know and come up with more competitively priced office productivity software.